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How you handle mowing call backs.

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by grassmasterswilson, Jun 27, 2013.

  1. Snapper Jack

    Snapper Jack LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 525

    There isn't an occupation out there that an employee or employer hasn't made a mistake of overlooking something,shitz happens and you move on. Incentives is just another alternative in boosting morale and production and for an employer to show his appreciation thanking you for your 100% efforts and beyond. It's obvious you've never worked for an employer who handed out bonuses.
  2. OakNut

    OakNut LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,104

    You shouldn't expect "bonuses" as a condition of doing your job properly.

    One shouldn't need to GIVE bonuses in order to GET the job done properly.

    Reminds me of the freaking TIP JAR found on the counter at a take out joint.
    Why should I give you a TIP for doing your JOB? A job that is not tip-worthy in the first place. Just put my effing sammich in the bag and take my money.
  3. 93Chevy

    93Chevy LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 40,375

    Ideally, employees would do 100% for what they're paid. We don't live in an ideal world. Rewards for good behavior are more effective than punishments for bad behavior. Keep a positive working environment and you won't have to worry about punishments as much. Just my two cents.
  4. MOturkey

    MOturkey LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,782

    It is interesting reading the replies to this thread, and seeing the differences between individuals in how they manage employees, and what they think of employees in general.

    I spent 27 years of my life working for a company whose management style was based on punishment, rather than reward. I stayed with it because it was a union job, and I grew up in a time when people tended to get a good job, and stay with it until retirement. I get a decent pension, and for that I am grateful, but I definitely earned it.

    You could go to work every day for years, doing your job to the best of your ability, and never get any kind of pat on the back. I worked in the sales department, and never once, in all those years had a legitimate customer complaint. We never got any type of bonus, not even a card at Christmas, and that, honestly, never bothered me, because I tend to agree with the idea that you are hired to do a job, and should do it to the best of your ability, your paycheck being the reward for doing so.

    However, the last few years in particular, the company was always "nit picking" about something. Supervisors tried, unsuccessfully, to get me written up for one infraction of company policy after another over little things that were only indirectly related to my job, never appreciating the fact that I had a great working relationship with my customers, and did what I was hired to do very well.

    I told people for years that when us older guys all retired out, they were going to have a hard time keeping help in that department, due to the way we were treated. Well, I've been retired 3 years, and out of approximately 30 employees in the department, only about 6 are still working that were there when I retired. True, a few simply reached retirement age, but most of the turnover has come about because the younger guys have quit and gone on to greener pastures, or transferred out of the sales department into production.

    I guess what I'm trying to say, to those of you who rely on employees to keep your business running, let them know their hard work is appreciated. You shouldn't have to implement a bonus program, often a simple "thanks" goes a long way. Instead of looking at all the things that are wrong, look instead at all the things they do right. If you have a good employee that is dependable and hard working, occasionally do something extra for them. Give them a gift certificate to a local restaurant so they can take their family out to eat. Maybe give out passes to a local theme park. Give them all a nice jacket with your company logo to wear when they are off-duty. In other words, find a way to say "thanks". I guarantee you, it will pay off in the long run.
  5. grassmasterswilson

    grassmasterswilson LawnSite Platinum Member
    from nc
    Messages: 4,968

    Thanks for all the replies.

    It is a very interesting topic and many have different view points.

    When we hire a person we expect certain criteria. If they do the job right we are all greatful. So I see the 2 sides of the coin. I will buy Gatorade or by lunch when we have busted tail to get a job done or its hot and we've had a great week.

    Entry level guys shouldn't expect much but I would love for the crew leader to take charge and pride in his work. I want him to take responsibility that the job is done above and beyond my expectations. Maybe he sees that mulch is looking old and makes a suggestion we spruce it up. After all looking for side jobs ensures a steady amount of work


    You could pay the guys a premium wage but with the understanding that the quality should remain high.


    You could pay a lower awe but give a bonus or commission when we reach goals or add work.
  6. JMK26

    JMK26 LawnSite Silver Member
    Male, from Missouri
    Messages: 2,453

    You are correct that bonuses are for 100% efforts above and beyond. The OP states it happens a lot, he's not saying it's a once in awhile thing. Since this is happening weekly, they are obviously not giving 100%. Obviously there is a problem, whether it's lack of training, or guys that just don't give a crap to get the job done giving more money out to do a job they are already getting paid to do is asinine.

    I have worked in many jobs where I received bonuses for doing a stellar job and going above and beyond, not to coax me into doing the job I was hired to do. For instance, I received a bonus for covering another guy's work because he didn't cover his own responsibilities. He got fired, I got the bonus....for working harder....It looks like quite a few guys on this forum would have overlooked me for busting my a** and given the other guy the bonus to do his job. That doesn't make sense to me.

    You give bonuses to employees that bust their butts because of their work ethic, and they show pride in their work and/or your company for going above and beyond. You don't give bonuses for normal work that is required. You'll go broke doing that, once the bonuses quit or slow down, so does the employee.

    I'm their boss, not there mom and dad handing out $20's for the pizza place.

    My posts may sound like I'm harsh and a jerk, but I'm not saying you don't reward good work with a pat on the back, and/or a bonus...I'm saying you don't reward or coax people to do a job they were hired and are getting paid to do.
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2013
  7. SouthSide Cutter

    SouthSide Cutter LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,331

    Some people and their ideas. First 10-12 dollars a hr is no treat. If you think it is try living on that. Second the tip jar may just be there because they dont make chit and just maybe some people out there know that and tend to help out a little!!!!
  8. yettawb

    yettawb LawnSite Member
    Messages: 9

    I have to agree that you shouldn't have to give your employees a bonus for doing there job. But, if they do their jobs and go above and beyond your expectations a little bonus at the end of the month or a couple times a year would show your appreciation. Take care of your employees and they will take care of you. Happy employees tend to stick around longer, take better care of your customers and your stuff. Having employees that have been with you for years looks great in the eyes of your customers too. Plus it doesn't hurt to have employees taking care of your trucks and equipment. There is a ton of information on the web about being a good boss and manager. Check it out and develop your own style that encourages your employees and keeps them and your customers happy happy happy!
    Posted via Mobile Device
  9. JMK26

    JMK26 LawnSite Silver Member
    Male, from Missouri
    Messages: 2,453

    I do live on that..........Plus.......please think.........when someone is making $12 an hour.....they are actually COSTING the company $15 to $18 an hour. Instead of blaming the business owner for paying too little complain to the government for all the regulations and taxes business are charged for having employees.

    I own my business and I pay myself $350 a week. $350 divided by at least 60 hours a week is just over $5 an hour, often it's less....You see, the guy that makes $12 an hour goes home at the end of the day......I make half what he makes and then I do maintenance, then I do paperwork, then I have to answer calls, then when he shows up at 7 am, I was already up for 2 hours prepping things to go.....so please define how paying someone $12 an hour is not a treat..............when the guy that pays him is making less than that?

    It's not hard to live off of $12 an hour, you're not living the high life but it's not that difficult. You may not have a pool and vacation...........but it's not hard. While I build the business ( and before when I did make $12 an hour) we don't have cable....we don't go out and eat, we don't go to movies....we don't go on vacation....we don't have a 70 inch 3D TV...we don't have every video game that exist....we don't eat name brand foods....store brand is fine, we don't have internet on the phone...we don't have unlimited texts...we don't have $600 phones, we shop at Goodwill and Salvation Army....we buy summer clothes in winter and buy winter clothes in summer. Needs and wants are quite different.....if you want your WANTS to be fullfilled...you may want to spend some time thinking that $12 an hour is a good living wage and start redefining your "needs" vs your "wants".

    This is why I think Basic Training should be a requirement to graduate High School....no draft...but I think every individual graduating should go through 8 weeks of basic training in the branch of military of their choice. After the 8 weeks they have the decision to sign on for further duty, or not and go to college or trade school or none of the above. Doing without really does the mind, body and spirit good.

    You are not OWED anything in life. If $12 an hour isn't enough to live off of then either stop f*cking around and get an education to make more........or deal with the fact that screwing off in school is the reason you don't make more than $12 an hour.... having a family and expenses isn't reason to make money your education, drive and intelligence dictates that.

    Sorry to say...showing up and carrying a trimmeraround all day tops out at $12 an hour....it isn't worth much more than that.

    When I got out of the Army and got my first job...........which was carrying around a trimmer all day until he decided to let me mow..............anyhoo...it was hard work...but it's a $12 an hour job TOPS.............I was paid $10 an hour and I was happy I got that.........I went to work each day to prove to my boss...the OWNER of the company that worked harder and longer than I did that the $10 an hour he's paying me is the best $10 an hour he will ever spend............and he did..........when I chose to start my own company...he has supported me...he has helped me...and he has even called me to work for him as I built my client list...........$10 an hour was a steal for everything he gave me........THAT is how you look at it.

    You get paid what you're worth, not what you want to make...unless you're union, then you get paid twice what you're worth then don't even have to work.
  10. orangemower

    orangemower LawnSite Silver Member
    from pa
    Messages: 2,768

    I don't know where to start. You obviously don't know how to run a business if your employee is making more then the owner of the company.

    Why would you want to live below poverty level? I guess if you enjoy living the "low" life then have at it. $12hr is peanuts if you own a business.

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